June 2, 2012
Filed under Uncategorized
As the school year is winding down this year, students in classrooms are getting more and more anxious and excited, much to the teachers’ chagrin. These students will have nothing school-related to do in the summer and will go on to do a variety of things, such as play a sport or go on vacation. Teachers are the same way, right? The students’ perception of teachers is that they leave with the students and think about school just as much during the summer (which is to say, not at all). Does this assumption hold true?
Here at Divine Child, a survey of the teachers produced some interesting results that contradict these assumptions. An English teacher at DC said, “I spend about 30-40% of my time on preparing for the coming school year. This summer, I will be spending about 20% of my week on the hybrid course and another 20% on a new course this fall.” Another teacher explained the need of working in the summer: “Summer is really dedicated to both preparing for the upcoming school year and working at my other place of employment. If I didn’t spend the summer working, my school year would be terrible!”
In addition to preparing for school, many teachers also hold down another non-school related job. One teacher works at “a summer program for at-risk students” while another one has “always worked during the summer since the age of 16.” Although teachers have to focus so much on other things during the summer, a social studies teacher has some good advice for teachers: “You have to make time for yourself! Close the books and hide the clocks. Relax because once fall comes around you will be immersed if you’re worth your salt as an educator.”
According to an article in the Washington Post, summer is “…a time to teach summer school for extra pay or to find a job outside of school. Many teachers, aware that adding degrees to their résumé is one of the few ways they can boost their pay, fill the break with graduate courses.” The teachers need the extra money, and therefore, need to work hard to get it.
However, amidst all the work, many of the teachers have done an assortment of cool things in their free time in summers past. Three years ago, a science teacher at DC went to “…the Dominican Republic to visit a child I sponsor. I had an opportunity to go to visit him and spend time with him and his family.” Another teacher, who teaches English, recalled her favorite previous summer: “One of my favorite previous summers is when we drove our Model A with the club all the way to Madison, Wisconsin, for the national meet.” Other cool vacations include trips to Europe, North Carolina, Hawai’i, and a trip throughout the southwest United States.
The summer is a time for teachers to relax, but it is not a huge break from work, as many people seem to think. “Many of the teachers’ summer plans mix personal interests and professional duties,” says the Washington Post article, and our school proves this point perfectly. Our teachers need to balance vacations, other jobs, creating plans for the upcoming year, and participating in educational activities, not to mention spending time with family, and at our school, and they seem to do that quite well.